IBM's Watson Supercomputer May Soon Be The Best Doctor In The World
Most people know Watson as IBM's answer to Jeopardy star Ken Jennings. But IBM's aspirations for its artificially intelligent supercomputer are now less quiz show champion and more medical genius.
"Watson, the supercomputer that is now the world Jeopardy champion, basically went to med school after it won Jeopardy," MIT's Andrew McAfee, coauthor of The Second Machine Age, said recently in an interview with Smart Planet. "I’m convinced that if it’s not already the world’s best diagnostician, it will be soon."
Watson is already capable of storing far more medical information than doctors, and unlike humans, its decisions are all evidence-based and free of cognitive biases and overconfidence. It's also capable of understanding natural language, generating hypotheses, evaluating the strength of those hypotheses, and learning — not just storing data, but finding meaning in it.